Finding Treasure (KJV)
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- Format: Folded Tract
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- Size: 3.5 inches x 5.5 inches
- Pages: 8
- Version: KJV
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There is just something fascinating about a wrapped gift and trying to guess what treasure could be inside. It is fun to lift it and shake it, checking to see how it feels and sounds. I suppose you could even try to smell it … anything, just to get a clue that might help to solve the mystery. But the real fun is in opening the present. Maybe that is why I enjoy metal detecting so much … “unwrapping” the earth to see what bounty awaits my lucky eyes. Sometimes it is a rare coin while other times it is only a pull tab from a dirty old aluminum can or some other trash. Either way, it is just fun to go on the adventure of digging for treasure. Ah … sooooo much dirt and sooooo little time!!!
But one day after finding a nice coin it occurred to me that this was, at one time, someone else’s treasure yet they lost it. That got me thinking that in the future I would not only lose that same coin but would, in fact, some day lose everything. Either my possessions would leave my hands and go to someone else or I would eventually “leave them” when I die … apparently it must be true, we simply can not take it with us. No wonder people have searched for “Fountains of Youth” and other springs that flowed with eternal life. What an incredible discovery it would be to find a treasure that you could never lose … something that would last forever!!!
In Matthew 6:19-20 we read, “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven.”
There is not any amount of money or any position on earth that I would take in exchange for the knowledge that I am going to heaven when I die. At first, that could almost sound boastful. One might wonder how someone could be so presumptuous as to assume that God is going to allow them into heaven. But it is not something that I am proud of because of any “good works” that I have done … actually, it is quite the opposite.
In First John 5:13 we are told something very comforting: “These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may KNOW that you have eternal life...”
Wow, what a statement!!! That verse does not say “that ye may have a chance to have eternal life” … or “cross your fingers and hope for the best” … but instead we find the amazing news that you may KNOW that you have eternal life. Stop and let that sink in for a moment. Imagine lying on a hospital bed either surrounded by family and friends or all alone … but with the understanding that you only have a few breaths remaining. Imagine the thoughts that must be running through your mind. What if you might go to heaven or what if you might not make it? What if something worse than any pain endured in this life awaits you? Hopefully it doesn’t … but what if you just didn’t know? On the other hand, what if you did know? What if you did know absolutely and for certain that in just a few moments as your heart stopped beating, wonderful peace and joy would be yours … forever? Think of the comfort you would have from that assurance. That is what God promises you, “that you may know that you have eternal life.”
I had mentioned earlier that I was not “proud” about the fact that I am certain that I will go to heaven when I die. Here is the reason why:
Romans 3:23 says that “all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
I have always known that I’ve done things that were wrong … but frankly, as I looked around me, I could see many others that were doing things much worse than I had ever done. I felt that I was not a “bad” sinner, just an “average” sinner. I had always pictured God with a giant scale that would have my good works on one side and my bad works on the other. I assumed that surely my good deeds would be greater than my bad deeds … yet Isaiah 64:6 tells us that “all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags” and in James 2:10 we find that if you “keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point” you are guilty of all.
It was hard for me to believe that the good things I was trying to do like charity or church membership or keeping the golden rule could be considered “filthy rags” And I had certainly offended in at least one point … “guilty of all” … how could that be?
Well imagine that you and I are each hanging from the ceiling by a chain with ten links in it. We each have our own chain and we each have ten links in our chain. Suddenly, nine links in my chain break. Nine links in my chain of ten links just snap, all at once. What will happen to me?
Exactly … I am going to fall, aren’t I? Now you are still hanging from the ceiling looking down at me as I lay there on the ground frantically pulling out my cell phone trying to dial 911 when you hear a little popping noise … not nearly as loud as the sound made when all nine of the links in my chain flew apart … no, only one of the links in your chain broke. Aren’t you the fortunate one, with only one link breaking … how lucky you are, right?
Well, maybe not, because you have fallen and landed on the ground right next to me. You fell just as far and hit the ground just as hard as I did, even though more links in my chain broke than in yours. We have all fallen short of the glory of God! It is not really about how many links break, it is about the fact that we have fallen. One sin makes us a sinner. The mistake I made earlier in thinking that God would accept me because I was not as bad as some of the other people I looked at was in comparing myself to my fellow sinners … but Romans 3:23 says that we have all come short of the glory of God … I should have been comparing myself to God … then I would have seen that I, like everyone else, fall completely short of Him. There you and I and the rest of the world lay flat on our faces … all of us fallen … all of us lost … all of us unable to save ourselves.
I was rather stunned as I realized that I wasn’t as good as I had always thought and even more stunned when I read Romans 6:23 where it says that “the wages [payment] of sin is death.” Even more alarming is Revelation 20:14 which tells us that death and hell will be cast into the lake of fire. Right about now you may be thinking, “Finding Treasure” … what kind of booklet is this? I thought this was going to be some useful information about how to find cool stuff when I go metal detecting yet this has only been a bunch of depressing terrible news! And if I stopped right now you would be correct, it would be hard to find news much worse than this. But fortunately Romans 6:23 does not stop with “the wages of sin is death” Thankfully there is a semicolon and the rest of the verse says, “but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Please think about the following verses:
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9). Again we see that salvation “is the gift of God.”
It has always interested me that Romans 6:23 does not say that the payment for sin is going to church or that the payment for sin is getting baptized. It does not say that the payment for sin is living a good life. No, it tells us that the payment of sin is death. Now we already know that God so loved the world that He gave us Jesus Christ. So what did Gods gift for us ultimately do? He was crucified and died … but why did He die? Because the payment required for sin is death … He died to make our payment that we owe for sin so that we would not have to make the payment ourselves. He took our place and that is God’s gift to us.
Now what can we do when someone offers us a gift? We can receive the gift or we can reject the gift. John 1:12-13 says, “But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name: which were born, not of blood [like you are born the first time] nor of the will of the flesh [like you are born the first time] nor of the will of man [like you are born the first time] but of God” [like you are born the SECOND time]. BORN AGAIN!!!
So maybe you are saying to yourself, “alright, I do believe that I am a sinner and I do believe that Jesus died to pay for my sin. I now understand that salvation is a gift that I would like to receive … but how do I receive the gift of God”?
Acts 2:21 says, “That whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” And again in John 16:24 we find, “Ask, and ye shall receive.”
If you are ready to settle your debt with God and accept the payment that has already been made for your sin then right now just call upon the Lord and ask Him for that gift that He very much would like for you to have. You meant so much to Him that He allowed Himself to be whipped, spit upon and crucified. He hung on a cross in shame … bled there, died there … that your sin could be washed away, that you could be forever clean and sinless in the sight of God. What a gift! What a treasure! What a saviour! Why not stop trusting in yourself, in the good works that you can try to do. Let go of the hope that you can be good enough to save yourself, because honestly, none of us can make it to heaven by our own efforts. Instead trust only in Him, the Lord Jesus Christ, the one who is completely able to save you.
If you are willing, why not ask Him now?